A total of 158 staff at low-cost airline bmibaby are facing redundancy after the carrier announced new restructuring plans. An airline spokesperson said 54 pilot and 82 cabin crew positions at Birmingham, Manchester and Cardiff airports were “at risk of redundancy”, as well as 22 management and support positions.
The airline also announced that it was reducing the number of aircraft in its fleet from 17 to 12 next year.
The companies Managing Director Crawford Rix said action had to be taken given the current economic conditions. The management redundancies will be lost at the firm’s head office at Castle Donington, in Leicestershire.
He said: “The aviation industry is facing its toughest time ever — it is experiencing record losses and remedial action has to be taken.
“Bmibaby is no exception to this. We have to focus our efforts and activities on routes and services that we believe are the best fit for our business. We believe that having identified and by concentrating on the core business areas and reinforcing our efforts, we can ensure that bmibaby continues to provide its customers with the best possible competitive fares as well as an attractive range of business and leisure products.”
The BBC reports that at least 66 pilots and cabin crew at Birmingham will be affected as well as 25 positions lost at Cardiff, out of a total staff of 87.
Services will also be cut but the firm were unable to reveal where these would be.
Union leaders said they would be talking to the company to ensure compulsory redundancies would not be needed.
Brian Boyd, Unite’s national officer for aviation, said: “Today’s announcement casts further doubt over the whole bmi group as its new owners Lufthansa search for cost savings.
“Unite members are once again caught at the sharp end of business restructuring.”